I have a confession. I have a history of self-sabotage.
I have a testimony. In spite of my unconscious attempts at self-sabotage, I am still actively founded and growing in greatness.
Now, how many of you can readily admit that you have, in some way, hindered your own journey toward a greater end? As referenced above, it is not always obvious that we do or have done this. It’s often hidden from our consciousness: sometimes disguised as succumbing to overwhelm; simply making a clear-minded choice that is the contrary to what we should be doing (and we know it); or (as has often been the case for me) using a real life situation, responsibility or commitment as the reason why you can’t take productive steps toward your greatness and fulfillment at a particular point in time. (Am I stepping on your toes yet?)
Let me give you an example of the latter: When pursuing my bachelors degree, I used that as the excuse that I didn’t have time to write. Now true, pursing a degree part-time when you are a full-time employee and single parent is quite the undertaking. Yet, I had time to veg out on TV and to hang out with friends and to spend recall-able time doing nothing. I made time for what I wanted to do and, frankly, I should have wanted to write. I didn’t have to write a book in 30 days (which was the enormity that I saw and had stopped me from pursuit) . . . I just should have written something. Pieces here or there. Thoughts. Something. But I didn’t. Self-sabotage in the way of dream killing.
You need more examples? I can absolutely supply. But the question is: Why do we do this? One reason could be that we are intimidated by the enormity or greatness of the work and the outcome. That such will take us too far outside of our comfort zone and force us to elevate our own standards and expectations.
The beauty here is . . . you can change this and achieve balance. The prerequisite of this change is to first identify and acknowledge the ways that you have self-sabotaged or hindered the attainment of your dreams in the past and, possibly, even now. Then take these few steps to try and turn it around:
1. List your priorities, responsibilities and commitments: Include everything that is to sustain your life as you know it and to build toward the life that you aspire to have.
2. Identify your action items as they pertain to the list above: Know what you must do to address everything. Drill it down in detail as far as you’d like, but the key is to end up with doable (not overwhelming) tasks.
3. Manage your time: Consider the actions toward fulfilling your dream as “me time” . . . because it is.
4. Keep a watchful eye on relapse: Pay close attention because relapse is normal and can be frequent. (I relapsed just this past weekend. I had planned to write but purposely did laundry, studied and “relaxed” instead.) If you stumble, don’t kick yourself while you are down. Simply catch yourself and try again.
Greatness and the tools with which to achieve that greatness (and fulfillment of purpose and joy) was placed on the inside of you to access and apply. Don’t fear it, that defeats the purpose. Embrace it and know that you can handle it.
Before I go, here is one homework exercise I want to assign to you. When I was a little girl, my father used to tell me to always say “I am a great one” when I look into the mirror. Of course, I didn’t understand it then. It was just a fun and funny thing I would do with my dad. But now, it resonates with my purpose like never before. So, each morning when you look in the mirror, tell yourself “I am a great one” and add to that any other affirmations that you need to fuel that greatness. Then . . . believe it. Dream free or die . . .